Turkey is such a popular country to visit. The perfect weather, tasty cuisine and beautiful beaches are some of the biggest selling points.
Millions visit each year, and many of them have the same question in mind before going…
Is Turkey in the Middle East?
This is a super common question because for some people it may affect travel plans, travel insurance or visa requirements.
Luckily for you, I have visited Turkey lots of times, and I’m here to provide an answer to this important question.
So without further ado, let’s get into whether Turkey is in the Middle East.
Is Turkey in the Middle East?
Unfortunately, this question doesn’t have a simple “yes” or “no” answer. The question “Is Turkey in the Middle East” requires a much more in-depth explanation, so I hope you’re ready for it.
The Middle East isn’t a universally defined region. It’s not a continent like Europe or Asia, it’s a nickname for a group of countries. Similar to how Central America doesn’t actually exist, it’s just the name given to the southernmost countries of North America.
This means that some people may consider Turkey as part of the Middle East, while others may not.
Generally speaking, most people consider Turkey not part of the Middle East geographically, as it is a bit further north and west than other countries considered part of the region.
But most people consider Turkey part of the Middle East in terms of religion, culture, heritage and pretty much anything else.
Everything in Turkey from the language (Turkish, a Turkick language), religion (Muslim), cuisine and architecture is very in-line with the countries of the Middle East.
Others may consider Turkey not part of the Middle East at all, as it is situated at the crossroads of Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. Is it in all 3 or just one? These are the questions which come up time and time again with Turkey and are always up for debate.
I suppose it’s down to you whether you consider Turkey part of the Middle East or not. I think the best explanation is that Turkey isn’t geographically part of the Middle East, but it is in terms of culture.
Just like how Tenerife isn’t geographically in Europe, but it is part of Europe politically and culturally.
So to summarise, the answer to “Is Turkey in the Middle East?” is technically no in terms of geography. But the culture in Turkey lines up with that of the Middle East.
What continent is Turkey in?
As I mentioned in the section above, Turkey is located at the crossroads of Europe and Asia. This leaves people with many questions like “Is Turkey in Europe?” or “Is Turkey in Asia?”
The answer is both. Turkey is a transcontinental country, meaning it’s so big, it fits across more than one continent: Europe and Asia.
People often refer to Turkey as being in Eurasia, the area where Europe leads to Asia. Other countries considered Eurasian are Russia and Armenia, for example.
Turkey also has a strong history having Roman, Greek and lots of other ruins from past civilizations. There are lots of UNESCO sites to check out across the country.
So to summarise, Turkey is in both Europe and Asia, geographically speaking.
What continent is the Middle East in?
The Middle East is ironically the most western countries of Asia.
It consists of countries like Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran and Jordan. The Middle East is a beautiful part of the world and it’s so easy to visit for cheap…backpacking Jordan is incredibly popular, for example.
This is why Turkey is not considered part of the Middle East in terms of geography, as it is too far west of these countries. It’s typically any country after Turkey is in the Middle East, whether that be to the south or to the east.
Where is Turkey?
Turkey is a country that is located between two continents, Europe and Asia. It’s like a bridge connecting these two parts of the world.
Imagine you have a map, and if you look at it, you’ll see that Turkey is shaped like a rectangle that’s pointing towards Asia.
The top part of Turkey is in Europe, and the rest of it goes down into Asia. So, it’s a little bit in Europe and mostly in Asia.
It’s pretty big so it’s easy to spot on a map.
Is Turkey in the Middle East: FAQ
Below are some questions related to “Is Turkey in the Middle East?” along with my answers.
Turkey is in Europe and Asia in terms of Geography. The country is at the crossroads of where the continents of Europe and Asia meet. In terms of culture, Turkey is very much similar to the Middle East, but it often isn’t considered part of the region due to its location.
Most people do not consider Turkey as part of the Middle East in terms of geography, it’s a little too far, well, west. But most people consider Turkey to have the same culture, cuisine, and way of life as the Middle East.
The simple answer is that it is too far west. Turkey’s location is the main reason that it isn’t considered part of the Middle East.
Is Turkey in the Middle East: Conclusion
And there you have it, a complete guide to “Is Turkey in the Middle East?”
Remember, the Middle East is only a term used to refer to a group of countries, so it’s up for debate whether Turkey is included or not.
Most people will consider Turkey not part of the Middle East in terms of geography, but consider it to have the same culture as the Middle East.
Hopefully, this post has taught you a bit about Turkey’s geography, and if you are heading to Turkey, enjoy your trip! It’s a wonderful country 🙂